Basic Bread - Kneading but never get silky/smooth
I want to start learning to bake. I've watch a few youtube videos, online recipes, and even my grandma's recipe, but seems to never succeed when I try them. I suspect I've failed on kneading. But what do I know :D
I've googled a lot and found a similiar topic in TFL, but it's quite different from my case.
The latest recipe I used is for a sweet bread. As I only planned to just practice, I halve the amount of ingredients needed. It became:
250g bread flour,
125ml warm water,
2-3tsp of sugar,
1 tbsp salt,
7-8g of instant yeast
Here is my latest trial,
I mixed all the dry ingredient first, including the salt. I then made a well and pour the water and egg, then mixed them with wooden spoon. I kept on stirring untill they incorporated into one ball of sticky dough.
I lightly floured the table, and put the dough there. I started to knead it. The way I knead was, as I watch from videos, by holding the dough with one hand, squish it with the other hand, spread it towards, fold the dough back, turn a little bit, and repeat. I rarely sprinkle flour as some say most hand kneading mistake is using too much flour. I didn't do the French hand kneading (pick up, slam, stretch, cover, repeat) because the dough is not as sticky and wet as in videos I watch on French knead.
I kept on kneading for like 45min to 1hour, but the dough never reach a state of being silky or smooth. Quite elastic, though. But not enough to pass the window pane test. Not like how I see in videos. The dough is sticky to my hand and work surface. When I squish, the outer part of the dough teared.
Giving up, I put them to rest for about one hour, and it expanded. I shaped it randomly, then rest them again for about 20min. The dough was still not smooth. It got wrinkles. I put them in the oven, 220C, for around half an hour. I observed the bread. The bread never get browned. It had the same color as when it's a dough. The bread got hard skin and yellowish body. It didn't taste good (for me) and I accepted it as a failure.
I think that was my 7th failure. It seems I'm not talented in bread making. But I'm still curious though.
So, I want to ask. What are the errors? How can it fix them? Did I use too little salt? Did I mix/knead it wrong? Or was it just not long enough? Did halving the ingredient has something to do with it?
I didn't give rest between mixing and kneading, as most recipes don't. I don't know much about humidity, the recipe I use has the same water-flour ratio as my grandma's recipe.
I'd be happy to hear some advices and corrections :D
P.S. pardon my English